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Friday, June 4, 2010

Cooking



Cooking takes up a lot of time. Not just the preparation and the actual selection of ingredients. Figuring out what to cook takes a lot of energy too.

When women talk, they will invariably describe the meal they cooked or the meal they were served. We are constantly preoccupied with what to serve, how to shop, when to shop, how much time and energy all this will take from our lives. Discovering an easy to prepare nutritious meal, something that will satisfy everyone at home, this discovery will make our day.

When I was a working mom, a teacher/administrator for forty years, and had to hustle to get to work and avoid freeway troubles, being organized and prepared for all eventualities, cooking a meal every evening was a big chore.  I could barely stand at the end of the day. 

Fortunately for me, I had learned to create simple meals that were nutritious and delicious, as the minestrone that can be made ahead, and can be frozen for future meals. If you enjoy these cook ahead recipes, I will add a few more in the future.

Ingredients for four servings:

2 cans of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (White Navy beans will work as well)
1 can of stewed tomatoes, drained, liquid reserved
1C chicken stock
2 cloves of garlic, mashed
2 T olive oil
2T chopped parsley, or basil
2T grated parmesan cheese
1C chopped cabbage
1C diced carrots
1C diced celery

The entire process will take you ten minutes. The meal will be ready in twenty. 

In a deep pot, saute' the garlic in olive oil, add the carrots and celery and saute' until soft.
Add the drained tomatoes.  Cook, at medium heat, breaking up the tomatoes for a few minutes. Add the liquid from the tomatoes and the chicken stock. Add the beans, the cabbage and the parsley. Reduce heat and simmer until the vegetables are soft enough to your liking.

Serve in a soup bowl with  parmesan cheese and chunky bread.
Freeze any leftovers.

Note: my mother would have cooked the beans from scratch, and added potatoes and ditalini pasta as well. But then, she had all day to get this to the table.


Enjoy.

36 comments:

Brian Miller said...

mmm...that sounds good...there is nothing like food to liven up a conversation either...and make it feel like home

The Girl from Cherry Blossom Street said...

Food brings people together.

"Serve in a soup bowl with parmesan cheese...."
Delectable!

Marguerite said...

Fortunately, I love to cook! This minestrone sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing!

Everyday Goddess said...

that is delightfully good I bet, I'll try it!

Eleonora said...

Brava Rosaria!!
This is what I like: familial, simple, hearty and made with love.

Do you blanch the carrots just a little bit? Or do they go soft quite easily?

I love this.

Maggie May said...

Thats just the kind of meal I like!
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Monkey Man said...

Yummy and easy. That's my favorite combination.

Ocean Girl said...

When we cook, we don't just take half a day, we make a lot of noise too. Boong boong boong we go. I don't know why we do not use the blender instead :)

janis said...

yummy! sounds very good! I will try it :)

The Girl from Cherry Blossom Street said...

I came back to let you know that the comment you left on my blog made me chuckle! Thanks!

Still drooling over the minestrone!

Robyn said...

Yum... I love to cook soup - especially minestrone and this recipe you're sharing is making me hungry!

x Robyn

#1Nana said...

Why is it that now that I'm retired and have time to cook, I find lots of quick easy recipes? I've used my crock pot more in the past year than I ever did when I was working.

This sounds great.

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Uh-oh. I should never come to here when I'm feeling the least bit hungry!

Natalie said...

Yummy! I LOVE Minestrone. ♥

NitWit1 said...

I love the short cooking time and simplicity of the recipe yet preserves the original source of someone who can cook all day! Wonderfulvitertsc

Everyday Goddess said...

i thought this should be shared, so i gave you one of my weekly. come on over to collect it anytime.

Eva Gallant said...

Sounts yummy!

becky at abbeystyle said...

Sounds yummy, especially with parmesan cheese and chunky bread...and nutritious. That's for supper tonight!

Rob-bear said...

I've always been able to prepare simple things, from peanut and butter and jam sandwiches, to barbecued chicken or beef, to pot roast.

I'm trying to be more inventive, and learn to prepare a broader range of meals.

Thanks for the recipe.

sheri... said...

oh, yes! you can post all of the recipes that you want!! the minestrone sounds so good, i'll bet i've got everything i need for it, too!
i was waiting to hear how your cooking habits have changed since you no longer have to juggle being a full time teacher and full time everything else!

Enchanted Oak said...

It has bothered me all my life, including when I was a child, that women cook & wash up while men talk and eat and doze. I must have made a vow when I was a girl child washing dishes after family suppers that when I grew up, I wasn't going to spend my time in the kitchen. We didn't have such lively foods as you describe in your Italian past. We had boring American meat and potatoes with a jello salad and a sheet cake.
But I grew up and cooked and washed up while the men talked and watched football or whatever on TV. I think I divorced my first husband because of it.
Now my dearest is retired, and he's the cook and I'm the bottle washer. It is good and right and fair. He makes more than meat and potatoes too.
Love your recipe for minestrone, Rosaria.

Rob-bear said...

I must confess I'm with Enchanted Oak: "Now my dearest is retired, and he's the cook and I'm the bottle washer. It is good and right and fair. He makes more than meat and potatoes too."

Having almost hit the age of "certifiable decrepitude" (65 years), I'm trying to learn new and useful things. And why not?

(P.S.: Bear has never been a big fan of tv — even less now than in the past — except for the weather channel, which tells me what I need to wear when I go out.)

nanny said...

Sounds wonderful, I love cabbage.....I'm thinking hot cornbread would be delicious with this!!!!

lakeviewer said...

p.s. Add more chicken stock if you want the minestrone to be more soup-like. Add less stock, if you want to add pasta and use this as a pasta and fagioli sauce.

RNSANE said...

Delicious sounding soup. I'm a great fan of soups of all kinds from gazpacho to Indian mulligatawny to chowders to those wonderful Scandinavian fruit soups!

Hilary said...

That sounds delicious.. even before breakfast! ;)

Lyn said...

Rosaria - I swear I can smell the soup cooking ... please post as many recipes as you want. Italian food is my all time favourite. Can you hear my tumy growling?

Reya Mellicker said...

I love minestrone!

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Mmmm...sounds fabulous!!! Thank you! Think I'll have to try this one as I LOVE minestrone...Love, Janine XO

Susan Erickson said...

yum, I love soup! so warming and cozy...and beans!..so under used, nutritious and delicious....in fact I have soup on right now....

Dave King said...

The theory that it was cooking that sent our branch of evolution on its journey to the human is now gaining general acceptance, it seems - so a hearty thank you, I suggest, to all cooks past and present!!!

Reasons said...

Thank you. Will try it.

Journaling Woman said...

#1. Y.u.m.m.y.

#2. I love recipes I can make ahead of time.

Teresa

Jo said...

Oh, that looks delicious...! Thank you for sharing that recipe. I know what I'm going to make the next time the munchkins come over. :-)

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

I love easy and yummy recipes. I have a hard time cooking during the school year too.

lakeviewer said...

Thanks, everyone! I'll be spending the next few weeks at my daughter's, trying new vegan recipes.
Yes, learning to cook vegan will expand my repertoire. Stay tuned.[